COVID-19 is the greatest threat to our National Security since World War II

The NSW Budget 2021-22 plans to spend $1.1 billion ‘to keep NSW COVID safe’ as part of a $30.2 billion health budget, yet NSW and other States do not have a simple or effective COVID-19 Safety Plan for strata and community properties.

According to the Australasian Strata Insights 2020 Report, apartment residents represent. See table above.

Therefore, if NSW mandated an effective strata specific COVID-19 Safety Plan then 15% of the population and 22%
of all households would be better informed and safer as a result, and similarly for other States.

How Governments have failed to keep Strata Communities COVID safe

Too much general information
No central strata specific information
People have to wade through too many web pages
No ACTION points and no effective Plans

The sudden onset of the COVID-19 Delta variant in our community should have forced us to adapt and quickly
learn how to address this issue. If the Government had succeeded in containing COVID-19, then we would not be in
the current lockdown situation.

Importance of Government getting it right

Some State Governments have not provided adequate guidance, leadership and structure that the strata
community can utilise and having in mind the size of the strata community within our population it is very surprising
that not all State Governments have mandated COVID-19 Safety Plans for strata and community properties.

Victoria – Made it mandatory for Owners Corporations to have a COVIDSafe Plan in place during their recent
COVID-19 outbreak earlier this year which appeared to be effective in reducing the spread. The Government guidance notes were very good but lacked a Contingency Plan, a Notification Plan, or Risk Assessments.

NSW – Currently the only tool provided by the NSW Government for Owners Corporations and Strata Managers is a rudimentary few pages Covid-19 Safety Plan for the Accommodation Sector, specifically the businesses of caravan parks, camping grounds, hotels, backpackers, hostels, dormitory-style accommodation, and gives no specific directions or steps to implement appropriate control measures. It simply asks if you agree to a statement, or tell them why, if you do not agree.

Legislation – Common Law Duty of Care + WHS

The respective Civil Liability legislation in each State imposes a duty of care, and the need to take precautionary measures against a significant risk that is foreseeable, and that a reasonable person knew or ought to have known WHS legislation requires workplaces to be safe for all persons, including occupants, visitors and contractors.

Due to close contact with shared areas, choke points and high touch surfaces, living in strata can be a COVID-19 super-spreader environment.

It is therefore prudent that people in the management or control of a strata or community property take action against COVID-19 risks (among other risks) that they uniquely face in a strata scheme. A specialist COVID-19 Safety Plan provider with Professional Indemnity Insurance should be engaged when Owners, Strata Managers and others do not want to take the personal responsibility and liability for preparing an effective Plan.

Effective COVID-19 Safety Plans

The Six Principles of COVID Safety
• Avoid interactions in enclosed spaces
• Create workplace and home bubbles
• Keep electronic records and act quickly
• Practise good hygiene
• Practise physical distancing
• Wear a face mask

An effective COVID-19 Safety Plan will include the following:
• Each of the six Principles of COVID Safety with actionable and effective points
• What to do when notified that someone at your property is a COVID-19 positive case
• Control measures to implement to stop the spread
• Appropriate Posters
• A Contingency Plan
• A Notification Plan
• Risk Assessments

Practical Ideas – for all strata schemes
• Create an identified Delivery Drop Off Point (even for small single driveway schemes)
• Property specific Government QR Codes
• Use an inanimate object (pen, key, credit card) to press high touch surfaces (lift and security buttons)
• Hands free – foot door opener


In some States it is mandatory for strata schemes to have things like an Asbestos Register, or 10 Year Plans,
or Insurance Valuations, but our Governments fail our community by not having a mandatory requirement for
COVID-19 Safety Plans to consider hazards and the inherent risks attaching to COVID-19 for strata properties, which
currently is the greatest threat to our community health, lifestyle and economy.

What would you do if you were notified of a positive COVID-19 case in one of your schemes?

COVID-19 is a disease created by the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).

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